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Squash Mourns Gamal Awad
Nov
10, 2004, by Ron Beck and Howard Harding, SquashTalk Independent
News Service
© 2004;


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(Watch
for a retrospective on Awad’s Career by Martin Bronstein, on SquashTalk
later this week) 

Gamal
Awad (Background) against his familiar opponent – Jahangir
,
(photo © 2004 SquashTalk archives)

Gamal
Awad, one of Egypt’s most successful squash players of the seventies and
eighties, has died suddenly at his home in Alexandria, aged 49.

Runner-up in both the 1982 World Masters and 1983 British
Open – in both cases to Jahangir Khan – Awad is perhaps best known for
participating with Khan in the longest-recorded match in the sport’s history,
in the Chichester Festival in England in 1983.

Awad recovered from 1-8 down in the first game to win
it 10-9 in 71 minutes – itself the longest game on record – before Khan
ultimately claimed match victory after an incredible two hours and 46
minutes!

Awad
was indelibly linked in squash history with his formidable rival Jahangir
Khan. Awad usually lost to Jahangir, but their matches provided a number
of historic meetings. Awad also did considerable talking, off court, about
how he was going to take on Jahangir on court. Jahangir later revealed
that Awad, who he considered a friend, often made boasts off court which
motivated Jahangir to heights of performance in their matchups.

Gamal
Awad, one of the finest Egyptian Players
, (photo © 2004
SquashTalk archives)

Gawad’s
untimely death coincided with reigning world champion Amr Shabana’s appearance
in last Saturday’s final of the British Open in Nottingham – the first
appearance of an Egyptian in the famous event’s final since Awad’s in
1983.

"This
sad news was a great shock to receive – and just after watching the first
Egyptian in a British Open final since Gamal," said Professional
Squash Association (PSA) Chief Executive Gawain Briars.

"I had the pleasure of being on the receiving end of many of Gamal’s
rallies and he was an iconic founder of professional squash in the great
years of Hunt and Jahangir," added Briars, a former world No4.

"Gamal has been and will be sadly missed by us all."

Gamal
Awad (right) in a familiar battle with Jahangir
, (photo ©
2004 SquashTalk archives)

 



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